Goshen swept away by Tornadoes

Published 11:17 pm Friday, November 13, 2009

The Goshen Eagles couldn’t catch a break during their second-round playoff game in Reform against Pickens County.

Even a fourth-quarter Pickens County touchdown was made on a fumble after a hit from an Eagle defender that popped the ball loose and into the hands of junior running back Rodger Wilson who carried it into the end zone.

Despite their 48-14 loss, the Eagles never stopped, making two drives in the fourth quarter that showed their resolve and led to the only Eagle points for the night.

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Junior running back Marcus Jackson, who had just 97 yards rushing during the game, put the Eagles’ only points on the board after running a kickoff back to the Tornado 47 yard line from their own 10 yard line. Four plays later and on the first play of the fourth quarter, Jackson found pay dirt to post the Eagles’ first points.

With just under four minutes left to play, sophomore Gauge Ballard hauled in a Jerome Lawrence pass at the Tornado 22 yard line. Two plays later found the Eagles in a third-and-14 position after Lawrence was sacked. It was Ballard that snagged a pass and tossed it to Jackson who scored the Eagles only other touchdown of the night. Senior kicker Wesley Burton’s point-after was good.

“These guys never quit tonight,” said head coach Bart Snyder. “They had every opportunity to stop and they didn’t.”

“We played a good team tonight – they haven’t been in the top 10 all season for nothing,” he said.

Lawrence attempted 19 passes, completing six for 54 yards and three interceptions. Two of those interceptions resulted in Pickens County touchdowns. Senior cornerback Keith Hall, a real utility player for the Tornadoes, was responsible for one touchdown on an interception, and set up the second TD on another pick off.

Goshen sophomore running back Reginald Foster had only 54 yards rushing for the night.

His only major break came mid-way through the first quarter with a trademark run around the right end that posted 38 yards on the carry.

That yardage piled up to just 76 yards rushing on 23 carries in the first half. Lawrence had nine attempts for two completions for 20 yards – a 9-yarder and an 11-yard connection to sophomore Brandon Alford at halftime.

Pickens County had just 148 yards total yards – completing only one pass for 48 yards on nine attempts by junior quarterback Deion Curry in the half, make a fairly even game from the stats. However, they took a 14-0 lead to locker rooms and were threatening a third as time expired.

“We will continue what we’ve started,” Snyder said. “We’ll continue what started next year.”

Snyder credited his senior class for the leadership they had demonstrated during the Eagles 8-4 season.

“Our seniors stepped up this year, and nobody expected to be where we are this season,” he said.

“That’s because of their leadership and the fact that our underclassmen came together under their leadership.”

“Our fans support really made a difference. We couldn’t have come this far without them,” he added.